Saturday, April 24, 2021

Comus - First Utterance (1971)

Comus - First Utterance (1971)

Tracklist front / back album covers

Comus - First Utterance

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"Diana" – 4:37 (Colin Pearson)

"The Herald" – 12:15 (Andy Hellaby, Glen Goring, Roger Wootton)

"Drip Drip" – 10:56 (Wootton)

"Song to Comus" – 7:31 (Wootton)

"The Bite" – 5:27 (Wootton)

"Bitten" – 2:16 (Hellaby, Pearson)

"The Prisoner" – 6:15 (Wootton)

Comus Band Members / Musicians

Roger Wootton – acoustic guitar, lead vocals

Glenn Goring – 6- and 12-string acoustic guitars, electric guitar, slide guitar, hand drums, backing vocals

Andy Hellaby – fender bass, slide bass, backing vocals

Colin Pearson – violin, viola

Rob Young – flute, oboe, hand drums

Bobbie Watson – lead and backing vocals, percussion

Comus - arrangements

Produced By Barry Murray - producer

Jeff Calver - recording, engineer

First Utterance is the debut album of the progressive folk band Comus. It was released in 1971, with the opening song "Diana" being released as a single.

First Utterance was notable for its unique blend of progressive rock, folk, psychedelia, and elements of paganism and the macabre. The overall thematic tone of the album is of vulnerable innocence facing abusive power,[1] with songs dealing with such themes as violence ("Drip Drip"), rape ("Diana", "Song to Comus"), and criticism surrounding electroconvulsive therapy ("The Prisoner"). These themes contrast starkly with the acoustic sound of the record, featuring acoustic guitar, violin, flute, and lyrical, almost Arcadian, female harmonies.

References to Comus by other bands and artists include Opeth, citing its lyrics in album and song titles and tattoos. Experimental outfit Current 93 also covered "Diana" as the opening song on their 1997 LP Horsey.

Comus are a British progressive folk band who had a brief career in the early 1970s. Their first album, First Utterance, brought them a cult following, which persists. They reunited in 2009, and have played several festivals and released a new album.

Comus was formed in 1969 by fellow art students Roger Wootton and Glenn Goring, who developed their musical style performing in folk clubs in and around Bromley in Kent. The band was named after Comus (a masque by John Milton), and also after the name of the Greek god Comus. The band grew from an early folk duo to a six-piece ensemble; in that later form, David Bowie came to appreciate them. They appeared regularly at his Arts Lab project in Beckenham, Kent. He also invited them to be his support act in a 1969 concert at London's Purcell Rooms.

Comus Band Members / Musicians

Roger Wootton – acoustic guitar, lead vocals (1969–1972, 1974, 2008–present)

Glenn Goring – 6–12 acoustic guitar, electric guitar, slide, hand drums, backing vocals (1969–72, 2008–present)

Andy Hellaby – Fender bass, slide bass, backing vocals (1969–1972, 1974, 2008–present)

Colin Pearson – violin, viola (1969–72, 2008–present)

Bobbie Watson – lead and backing vocals, percussion (1969–1972, 1974, 2008–present)

Jon Seagroatt – flute, oboe, hand drums (2008–present)

Rob Young – flute, oboe, hand drums (1969–71)

Gordon Coxon – drums (1974)

Keith Hale – keyboards (1974)

Lindsay Cooper – bassoon (1972, 1974)

Comus Discography Full

Studio albums

First Utterance (1971)

To Keep from Crying (1974)

Out of the Coma (2012)

Live albums

East of Sweden: Live at Melloboat Festival 2008 (2011)

Out of the Coma (2012) recorded 1972

Box sets

Song to Comus: The Complete Collection (2005)


"Diana / In the Lost Queen's Eyes / Winter is a Coloured Bird" (1971)

Roger Wootton solo single

"Fiesta Fandango" / "New Tide"

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